A Mifflin County man was convicted Thursday by a Centre County judge for the 1995 rape of a Penn State student.
Scott Williams was found guilty of rape by forcible compulsion and aggravated assault by Judge Brian Marshall.
The action was a stipulated bench trial where the defense agreed to the two charges presented to the judge.
The judge approved a bench trial, a non-jury trial, for Williams in December.
Prosecutors are seeking at least 7.5 years in jail. Sentencing is set for March 25.
Williams’ defense attorney refused to comment after the trial, telling 6 News they will consider an appeal after sentencing.
Williams’ arrest made headlines in October 2021 when detectives used DNA evidence saved from the 1995 attack to lead them to him. When the rape happened, prosecutors at the time charged “John Doe” with the crime using the DNA profile obtained. Current District Attorney Bernie Cantorna said that step was unprecedented in the eastern United States.
The case went cold but remained opened. Prior court documents said a detective asked for new DNA testing in 2019. The FBI lab sent a new profile using the old evidence and, in turn, the detective sent it to two private labs. The affidavit said one of those labs created a profile of the attacker using genealogical DNA, creating an ancestry match. It says it identified Wanda Williams as being a possible relative of the man they were looking for.
Detectives said they learned Scott has a son who plays high school football and was going to attend a sports banquet. The detectives said they went to the banquet, undercover, and attempted to get utensils Williams used. They said he didn’t use any, but they recovered utensils used by his son.
It was May of 1995, during early morning hours, when a Penn State student was walking home on South Pugh Street in State College.
Police say Williams hit her from behind, and then dragged her to a nearby flower bed, and raped her.
According to police, her skull was cracked as she was repeatedly beaten. Williams is also accused of stealing her purse and other items.